Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, November 25, 2013)
Word of the Day

hardtack

Definition:(noun) Very hard unsalted biscuit or bread; a former ship's staple.
Synonyms:pilot bread, sea biscuit
Usage: When we dock, the first thing I am going to do is toss the rest of my hardtack into the water and get myself a loaf of fresh, crusty bread at the nearest bakery.
Article of the Day

Literary Nonsense

Literary nonsense, or nonsense literature, uses language to defy literary conventions. Its most common form is nonsense verse, which is humorous or whimsical and features absurd characters and evocative but meaningless words. It differs from other comic verse in its resistance to any rational or allegorical interpretation. Nonsense verse emerged at the beginning of the 19th century and has been mostly written for children. What poem is likely the best known example of literary nonsense? More...
This Day in History

Agatha Christie's The Mousetrap Begins Its Record-Breaking Run (1952)

When The Mousetrap opened in London, Christie, a legendary mystery author, predicted her play would run for just eight months. However, its initial run never ended, and it is now the longest-running play in the world. The murder mystery has been performed more than 24,000 times and is a popular tourist attraction. At the end of each performance, the audience is asked not to reveal the play's notorious twist ending. Who owns the rights to the play, and how did he get them? More...
Today's Birthday

Virgil Thomson (1896)

An influential American music critic and composer, Thomson studied in Paris. There, he met Gertrude Stein, with whom he wrote the operas Four Saints in Three Acts and The Mother of Us All. He also wrote several film scores. As music critic for New York's Herald Tribune, he delivered gracefully written criticism that was respected for its concern with music rather than the performers. What unusual method of composition was Thomson known for reviving? More...
Quotation of the Day
Deep unspeakable suffering may well be called a baptism, a regeneration, the initiation into a new state.

George Eliot (1819-1880)

Idiom of the Day

bring (something) into effect

To cause (something) to apply, begin operating, or take effect; to begin implementing or enforcing (something). More...
Today's Holiday

Manger Yam (2017)

Manger Yam is a harvest celebration of the yam crop observed in Haiti. It is considered taboo to eat any of the new yams before the festival for fear of falling ill or bringing ruin to the yam crop. In Vodoun belief, it is very important for people to maintain relationships with the dead, as well as with each other and the gods, so the deceased are included in the Manger Yam. In the Vodoun service, the priest or priestess leads prayers to the dead and to the gods and offers the first yams to them. After the ceremony, people feast on yam dishes and enjoy music and dancing. More...
In the News

2013 One of Hottest Years in Recorded History

The year is drawing to a close, and it is on track to be the seventh warmest on record. The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) notes that weather extremes were also a trend in 2013, with typhoons, heat waves, and flooding—among other extreme weather events—causing widespread damage and loss of life. In addition, the global sea level reached a new record high, making coastal populations more vulnerable to storm surges. Over the past century, our seas have risen by about 8 inches (20 cm). More...
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